A $25,000 fireworks show paid for by the City of North Myrtle Beach ended with an unexpected explosion Thursday night. It sent one person to the hospital and damaged the Cherry Grove pier.
City spokesperson Pat Dowling said six minutes into the North Myrtle Beach July 4 fireworks show at the pier, a shell exploded early and severely injured a worker with Zambelli Fireworks. Medics took the worker to Grand Strand Regional Medical Center.
Dowling said the blast also blew a two foot by three foot hole in the pier and damaged about four feet of pier railing.
Dowling said Zambelli Fireworks decided the safest way to get rid of the remaining explosives was to set them off.
"All the precautions were in place, all the safety requirements were met but I guess occasionally you either have a bad piece of fireworks or something. There's no way I guess to know but we don't have any details the state is looking into what actually happened and they will come back and determine what went wrong," said Marc Jordan, the President of the North Myrtle Beach Chamber of Commerce.
The President of the Zambelli Fireworks company said he thinks this incident was caused by a defective shell.
"They're all handmade individually and if you have a couple hundred people in the factory unfortunately you are going to occasionally get a shell that will blow in a tube like that," said Doug Taylor, the President of Zambelli Fireworks.
Dowling said the worker was treated and released from the hospital Friday morning.
The North Myrtle Beach Fire Department will investigate the incident.
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